Friday, April 23, 2004
TUSCALOOSA – University of Alabama junior Darby Sligh garnered the Southeastern Conference’s inaugural Scholar-Athlete of the Year award for women’s golf and was also named to the second-team All-SEC squad in an announcement from the SEC office today.
Sligh, a native of North Augusta, S.C., was awarded the Scholar-Athlete honor through a vote of the league’s 12 women’s golf coaches. The three-year letterwinner, two-time Academic All-SEC selection, and National Golf Coaches of America Academic All-American carried a 74.71 stroke average on the course while maintaining an impressive 3.59 GPA in Marketing in the classroom.
“I am extremely proud of Darby,” said UA head coach Betty Palmer. “Not only is Darby a dedicated worker on the golf course, but as this honor proves, she is also very committed to her class work. To see how hard she works in both areas, it is no surprise why she is such a success. This is a tremendous honor for her and one that I feel is truly deserved.”
Her inclusion on the All-SEC second team was based upon her playing statistics and current ranking among league players. Sligh led the Crimson Tide in stroke average this season and recorded five Top 10 finishes in nine events. She captured a pair of individual tournament titles including her season-opening victory at the Alabama hosted Ann Rhoads Intercollegiate. All 24 of her competitive rounds counted towards the team’s score and she recorded a quartet of sub-par rounds.
Sligh becomes just the fifth Bama women’s golfer to earn All-SEC second team honors and marks only the 16th time a Tide linkster has been named to one of the SEC’s All-Conference teams. She is the first Crimson Tide golfer since Sarah Johnston in 2002 to be named All-SEC.
The Alabama Crimson Tide, including Sligh, is anxiously awaiting the announcement of the NCAA Regional Fields scheduled for 2 p.m. on Monday, Apr. 26. UA is hopeful of receiving a bid to one of the three regional sites: Howey-in-the-Hills, Fla., Normal, Ill., or Palo Alto, Calif., for competition on May 6-8.